James Drinkwater - Hand Embellished Unique State Etchings

10 May 2018

In 2015—six months after being awarded the coveted Brett Whiteley Travelling Art Scholarship—James Drinkwater journeyed into the interior of Australia. Working en plein air in the dry creek beds with canvases roped to desert oaks, the artist created paintings, drawings and hand embellished unique state etchings.

It was a pivotal moment in the artist's career. His vision of the ancient land, created from those hot and heady days and nights, has become known as “Encrusting the Marvellous Heart”.  It was a deeply personal exploration by the artist of the landscape and the history of the people who have walked it forever.  As he worked, his feelings of longing for his young family at home were foremost in his head. Yet the lure of the country kept him working feverously. 

Published by Block Editions, the Encrusting the Marvellous Heart collection has not been released for sale until now. It is a time capsule of a remarkable moment in the artist's life. Such is the regard of this body of work, the Art Gallery of NSW has acquired two works for their permanent collection.

Drinkwater's process of painting directly with sugar-lift on etching plates—scratching them on the ironstone of the MacDonnell Ranges and ultimately reworking individually in ink, pencil and gouache—provide an insight into the artist's most intimate moments within the vast country that he worked. They are at once rugged and romantic. 

At the time, the artist penned a poem to accompany the series.  He offered an explanation to me of the meaning of his words and, with his permission, I publish it here.

VIEW CATALOGUE

News

2018 Archibald & Wynne Prize Finalists - Six Nanda\Hobbs artists selected

3 May 2018

Four Nanda\Hobbs artists have been selected in the Archibald Prize—Jun Chen, Jonathan Dalton, Kathrin Longhurst and Ben Smith while two of our artists are finalists in the Wynne Prize for landscape painting—James Drinkwater and Paul Ryan. Winners announced Friday 11 May.

Read more
NH Event

N\H exhibits Hermannsburg artists in Chifley's magnificent lobby

25 January 2018

As Chifley's art partner, we are delighted to have installed five magnificent works in the building's lobby by contemporary Indigenous artists of the Hermannsburg region. Chifley's grand and elegant lobby in Sydney's CBD is a magnificent setting for the museum quality masterpieces. They will be on display until early May. 

Read more
News

Gippsland Art Gallery exhibition features Giles Alexander

22 January 2018

Two major paintings from Giles Alexander's 2015 “Portal” series are exhibited in the major exhibition at Gippsland Art Gallery.  Imagine encompasses 134 works from 81 national and international artists and feature Alexanders paintings on both the front and back cover of the catalogue.

Read more
12 - 14 Meagher Street Chippendale, NSW 2008
Opening Hours
9am - 5pm Monday to Friday 11am - 4pm Saturday